Barr to *fix* public education with ever more confusion?

johnboy 24 May 2011 22

The Canberra Times brings word of plans to make public education ever more confusing to parents in a bid to counter the exodus to private education:

Sweeping reforms to Canberra’s government high schools and colleges could include widespread access to virtual classrooms, encouraging top high school students to take university courses and even condensing Year 9-12 into three years.

Sounds like more of the problem, not the solution.


What's Your Opinion?


Please login to post your comments, or connect with
22 Responses to Barr to *fix* public education with ever more confusion?
Filter
Order
Kalfour Kalfour 4:15 pm 15 Jul 11

LeatherJen said :

Jim Jones said :

LeatherJen said :

The scum need to be identified and sent to a separate school. If the decent kids are allowed to learn, they will.

Just to clarify: you are referring to children as ‘scum’ right?

Some of them, yes.

Scum is a bit harsh, but I see the point in this.
There ARE situations where a student can be deemed unfit for a mainstream classroom based on behavioural tendencies (violence etc.)
I briefly worked at a school where a kid diagnosed with ODD (oppositional defiance disorder – the kid was smart for its age but very violent) had a classroom to itself (I’m using ‘it’ deliberately, don’t want to identify the kid) including a full time teacher and LSA. This child would not be allowed into a mainsteam classroom without passing various psychological tests to prove that they were emotionally in control.
There are schools that have units for kids with extreme behaviours. But public schools cannot refuse any student, and not many have the facilities to provide separate classrooms for these kids.

Diggety Diggety 12:18 am 25 May 11

BicycleCanberra said :

Finland has the best outcomes for school children in the world and leads all league tables when comparing OECD countries and guest what? no private or independent schools just left wing socialist education. Viva la revolution!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/world_news_america/8601207.stm

Thanks for proving my point, BicycleCanberra:

Canberra- wait for it- is not Finland. School boy error I’m sure, but I’ll let that sink in a while…

Have you compared anything else that may contradict argument, like Australia for example*? Nup? Didn’t think so.

‘Viva revolution’ indeed…

GardeningGirl GardeningGirl 7:07 pm 24 May 11

sepi said :

taking kids out of the public system doesn’t make it better for those remaining, it makes it worse.

govt doesn’t just leave all the resources there for less students, it means they close the school if it gets too small. Or all the classes are enormous composite classes as there aren’t enough kids for a whole class.

and All the problem kids remain, just in a smaller group of standard kids.

I think it is the opposite – the more students leave for the private system, the worse off those in public schools will be.

Exactly!

BicycleCanberra BicycleCanberra 6:07 pm 24 May 11

Diggety said :

Read this, particularly 7th-12th paragraph: http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2729036.html

It is clear- and has been for some time- that the Left wing propaganda on this issue is just plain wrong. The socialist education experiment is a failure, they just can’t admit it.

I know where I’ll be sending my children. Presuming my boys can swim, of course.

Finland has the best outcomes for school children in the world and leads all league tables when comparing OECD countries and guest what? no private or independent schools just left wing socialist education. Viva la revolution!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/world_news_america/8601207.stm

Sleaz274 Sleaz274 5:43 pm 24 May 11

DET’s budget figures went up even though they now have less students. More money for less students.

Of course people who can afford it pay extra for better services and they should expect better outcomes in private schools. Think public vs private health. Think toyota camry vs BMW 7 Series.

More kids in private schools is better for the taxpayer, better for students and better for the public education system. I don’t know why government is trying to argue otherwise. And now they have another “sweeping reform” to add to the other hundred they have had further wasting time and resources from DET away from teaching and teachers.

Maybe the lack of politicians and the ability of private schools to allocate their own funding pile rather than being told what to spend it on; case in point “virtual classrooms” give me a break, means they can operate more effectively.

The ACT government should be actively encouraging parents to use the private system not the other way round.

I like long lunches…

sepi sepi 5:11 pm 24 May 11

taking kids out of the public system doesn’t make it better for those remaining, it makes it worse.

govt doesn’t just leave all the resources there for less students, it means they close the school if it gets too small. Or all the classes are enormous composite classes as there aren’t enough kids for a whole class.

and All the problem kids remain, just in a smaller group of standard kids.

I think it is the opposite – the more students leave for the private system, the worse off those in public schools will be.

Diggety Diggety 5:10 pm 24 May 11

Read this, particularly 7th-12th paragraph: http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2729036.html

It is clear- and has been for some time- that the Left wing propaganda on this issue is just plain wrong. The socialist education experiment is a failure, they just can’t admit it.

I know where I’ll be sending my children. Presuming my boys can swim, of course.

triffid triffid 5:04 pm 24 May 11

Sleaz274 said :

More kids in private education means better educational outcomes for students in public schools as scarce resources are less utilised. This improves class sizes which in primary school’s at least is the single greatest determinant of educational outcomes.

Inversely the more students that attend private schools the worse the educational outcomes become for them. Assuming a set number of schools.

Summarised more succintly for triffid who I think proved my point with their own drunken (one can only presume) reasoning. Sounds like the opposite of a social class hierarchy.

Yeah . . . those long lunches get me every time.

Explain to me, then, in simple terms (so that even monosyllabic and booze addled ‘ole me can understand) the underlying assumptions and sub text when you say,” . . . yet people wanting to access better services for their kids pay extra.”

‘Cos my point wasn’t about class sizes, or whatever funding offset might be derived from your market system but, rather, about the need for there to be no difference in the prospect of quality education outcomes irrespective of if a private or public school is attended. What? You get a better education because you can afford it? School tie network remains alive and well? I might be drunk, but at least I’m not on drugs.

LeatherJen LeatherJen 4:21 pm 24 May 11

Gerry-Built said :

as long as Barr refuses to accept that there are students that need to be removed from the “normal” school setting and given some form of intensive redirection, the situation will continue to worsen… I, for one, am sick of the problem students being ignored… They are a fact of life – but teachers, staff and schools need support to help deal with them. Whilst “scum” may be a harsh word to use for them; keep in mind we have in our Public Schools; kids that break the law, kids that assault other kids, kids that refuse to come to class to learn – and actively refuse to allow others to learn and kids with serious mental health issues. Whilst these difficult students attend normal classes, they are a distraction to the other kids, almost all of whom are actually interested, even eager, to learn.

Thankyou for summing this up so nicely.

And yes, perhaps scum is a bit harsh as a descriptor.

Sleaz274 Sleaz274 4:21 pm 24 May 11

More kids in private education means better educational outcomes for students in public schools as scarce resources are less utilised. This improves class sizes which in primary school’s at least is the single greatest determinant of educational outcomes.

Inversely the more students that attend private schools the worse the educational outcomes become for them. Assuming a set number of schools.

Summarised more succintly for triffid who I think proved my point with their own drunken (one can only presume) reasoning. Sounds like the opposite of a social class hierarchy.

triffid triffid 3:12 pm 24 May 11

Sleaz274 said :

Surely it is better for the government if more parents elect to pay for private schools???

It reduces class sizes (the biggest factor in educational outcomes), reduces cost pressures on schools, reduces proportionally “problem” students or students with learning difficulties or disabilities which are a huge cost, reduces the workload for teachers…I’m sure those closer can keep going.

If people can afford to pay why shouldn’t they reduce the burden on the government and send their kids to private schools who receive funding anyway and are freer in their ability to determine how they spend that money??

Classic case of the market system working, the government safety net still works, yet people wanting to access better services for their kids pay extra.

And perhaps fewer plans, strategies, reviews, re-structures, recruitment campaigns, initiatives etc etc would be better for DET and then they can focus on teaching and teachers.

All of which presumes that we have the perfect world in which all parents actually have the ability to choose to pay for the (alledged) better services. But, why ought a kiddie with actual academic potential be forced — due to the operation of some abstracted classical market system — to accept ‘second best’ simply by virtue of their parent’s SES? We’re not talking about factories here, or the viscitudes of business and commerce.

Sounds a bit like a nod and a wink to a social class hierarchy to me.

miz miz 3:12 pm 24 May 11

Sepi’s “noone cares about virtual classrooms” just about sums it up – couldn’t agree more.

People send their kids to private schools to get away from trendy education fads and get back to basic, tried and true learning methods, such as learning times tables.
Obviously there is always a place for gifted and talented learning streams, but what is actually needed is trust that the public system will deliver for most students in some consistent way.

My advice to Mr Barr is forget fads, and get back to basics – single desk set ups to remove distraction (instead of weirdly grouped desk arrangements and ‘desk lotto’), and consolidation of basic learning tools such as times tables, mental arithmetic, phonics, spelling, writing skills, grammar, and book work. These are the skills that set kids up for life, no matter what they end up doing.

GardeningGirl GardeningGirl 3:02 pm 24 May 11

Gerry-Built said :

as long as Barr refuses to accept that there are students that need to be removed from the “normal” school setting and given some form of intensive redirection, the situation will continue to worsen… I, for one, am sick of the problem students being ignored… They are a fact of life – but teachers, staff and schools need support to help deal with them. Whilst “scum” may be a harsh word to use for them; keep in mind we have in our Public Schools; kids that break the law, kids that assault other kids, kids that refuse to come to class to learn – and actively refuse to allow others to learn and kids with serious mental health issues. Whilst these difficult students attend normal classes, they are a distraction to the other kids, almost all of whom are actually interested, even eager, to learn.

+1

Sleaz274 Sleaz274 2:41 pm 24 May 11

Surely it is better for the government if more parents elect to pay for private schools???

It reduces class sizes (the biggest factor in educational outcomes), reduces cost pressures on schools, reduces proportionally “problem” students or students with learning difficulties or disabilities which are a huge cost, reduces the workload for teachers…I’m sure those closer can keep going.

If people can afford to pay why shouldn’t they reduce the burden on the government and send their kids to private schools who receive funding anyway and are freer in their ability to determine how they spend that money??

Classic case of the market system working, the government safety net still works, yet people wanting to access better services for their kids pay extra.

And perhaps fewer plans, strategies, reviews, re-structures, recruitment campaigns, initiatives etc etc would be better for DET and then they can focus on teaching and teachers.

Watson Watson 2:19 pm 24 May 11

There are some potential advantages in here for the very bright and some (pretty weak) policies to help the strugglers. But nothing for the majority of “average” students??

(I am deliberately ignoring this repeated debate about public school scum – there is already a popular thread for that – please take the discussion back there?)

Gerry-Built Gerry-Built 1:39 pm 24 May 11

as long as Barr refuses to accept that there are students that need to be removed from the “normal” school setting and given some form of intensive redirection, the situation will continue to worsen… I, for one, am sick of the problem students being ignored… They are a fact of life – but teachers, staff and schools need support to help deal with them. Whilst “scum” may be a harsh word to use for them; keep in mind we have in our Public Schools; kids that break the law, kids that assault other kids, kids that refuse to come to class to learn – and actively refuse to allow others to learn and kids with serious mental health issues. Whilst these difficult students attend normal classes, they are a distraction to the other kids, almost all of whom are actually interested, even eager, to learn.

colourful sydney racing identity colourful sydney racing identity 1:16 pm 24 May 11

LeatherJen said :

Jim Jones said :

LeatherJen said :

The scum need to be identified and sent to a separate school. If the decent kids are allowed to learn, they will.

Just to clarify: you are referring to children as ‘scum’ right?

Some of them, yes.

which ones?

GardeningGirl GardeningGirl 1:02 pm 24 May 11

sepi said :

HOnestly.

As per the last thread on public vs private education, the main thing anyone cares about fixing at public schools is the discipline issues and ensuring that kids are not scared of getting bashed up at school.

+1
I was telling that to a staffer at a Labor stall somewhere once when Barr arrived. You’d think hearing matters pertaining to his ministry he might’ve joined the conversation? No, he disappeared very promptly, leaving the staffer to continue pushing the line that there’s no problem, it’s not an issue.
Don’t listen to the parents, just throw some trendy technology and “better marketing” at the situation, yeah, that’ll work.

LeatherJen LeatherJen 12:50 pm 24 May 11

Jim Jones said :

LeatherJen said :

The scum need to be identified and sent to a separate school. If the decent kids are allowed to learn, they will.

Just to clarify: you are referring to children as ‘scum’ right?

Some of them, yes.

Jim Jones Jim Jones 12:45 pm 24 May 11

LeatherJen said :

The scum need to be identified and sent to a separate school. If the decent kids are allowed to learn, they will.

Just to clarify: you are referring to children as ‘scum’ right?

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top

Search across the site